Page 45 Review by Jonathan
Theres probably only one word I need to utter to sum up this entire third compendium of over a thousand pages collecting issues #97 to #144 of THE WALKING DEAD, which is... Negan.
He might be an utterly evil bastard, but hes undoubtedly the wittiest, smoothest evil bastard to grace the pages of this comic, and practically every other. From the moment he first crosses the path of Ricks merry band, making quite the... impact (regular readers of the title will know exactly what I am referring to) hes quickly become the man we love to hate, but also hate to admit we love. He alone took my already considerable enjoyment for this title to such new levels, I ended up reviewing three successive smaller graphic novel arcs, practically unheard of for a title thats been going this long, which is thirteen years to date! Having reread them, I might as well just reproduce them in full as they sum up the mayhem contained within this brick of a compilation perfectly. Heres hoping the series continues long enough that theres sufficient of these compendiums to construct a zombie proof dwelling with...
Walking Dead Volume 18: What Comes After
Can I say something? I dont quite understand the hostility in that look. No fucking sir.
Im a special kind of person. I dont fucking rattle.
You even made me drop Lucille. You have any fucking clue how much she hates being on the ground? Shes like an American flag that way. You just dont let it happen... its disrespectful.
Still... here I am, friendly as a fuckless fuck on free fuck day.
In which everyones least favourite pinch-hitter Negan continues his reign of terror, enforced only by his sheer force of will, and of course dear old Lucille, his barbed-wire-decorated baseball bat. Scarcely have I ever wanted a fictional villain to get it so, so badly!! The last time was probably The Governor, actually, which all goes to show Kirkmans horror epic doesnt show any signs of running out of steam any time soon. What next? A man with a tiger for a pet? Enter King Ezekiel... a man who really has got a tiger for a pet... and who might just be Ricks best chance at taking out Negan. Somehow though, I cant quite imagine its going to be as simple and straightforward as that.
Walking Dead Volume 19: March To War
Were the big swinging dick of this world... have been for a long fucking time... but it seems people are forgetting that.
So now our big swinging dick is going to swing harder... and faster, until we take off like a motherfucking helicopter and blow all these motherfuckers away.
SIGH. Were going to war.
Ha ha I really can't see that little speech ever making it into the TV show!! I am so pleased Robert Kirkman didnt kill off the megalomaniacal Negan almost immediately as originally intended, because he really has been absolute comedy gold. The pained look on his face after his troops just dont get his motivational message and he has to break it down for them had me giggling on and off for a good hour afterwards. I do love the TV show but the comic is just brilliant right now.
Walking Dead vol 20: All Out War Part 1
So... today's the day?
How do you feel?
Overwhelmed... this is big... bigger than anything we've ever done. This is war.
You can't have a war without... casualties.
Poor old Rick, he always seems to have the weight of the remaining world on his shoulders. Yes, never a series to shy away from killing beloved characters, Mr. Kirkman has decided to up the ante and go all-in for the next twelve issues, six of which are contained within this volume. Well, technically all-out according to the title, but that didn't work with my poker metaphor.
What next? Rick and Negan doing the all-in, all-out Hokey Cokey mano-a-mano to decide the winner of their private war? I think I saw that in a Kevin Costner film once... More likely, though, is simply the highest body count yet, as both sides conclude peace in their time is starting to look about as likely as a zombie Michael Jackson suddenly appearing to lead the walking dead in a rendition of Thriller. Though, technically, if you think about it, that is possible: he has to be shambling around somewhere...
Pretty surprised Kirkman hasn't played the celebrity zombie card yet... in fact, maybe like Ricks weird technocolour alien dream sequence in issue #75, Kirkman's saving a celeb cameo for the 200th issue... How about a zombie Stan Lee...? Also, remember the tiger? Yes, that tiger which spawned the Ezekiel has got a tiger merchandise t-shirts? Not sure if it's too late to get a refund, but...